1Professor Schroeder-Sheker teaches in the Music Department at Regis College, Denver CO. She is Vice-president of the International Society of Hildegard of Bingen Studies, Contributing Editor for the Belgian journal Initiations, and Director of Ars Antiqua, a centre devoted to mediaeval musicology with special emphasis on harps and psalteries. She is an international concert and recording artist and can be heard on Windham Hill Records and Lady Reason Records. Her most recent recording, The Queen's Minstrel (Windham Hill WD 1074), explores the life of pilgrimage.

2Jean During, “Poetry and the Visual Arts” World of Music 24/1 (1982).

3Mechthild of Hackeborn (1244-1310) was a nun at the convent of Helfta and a friend of both Gertrud the Great and Mechthild of Magdeburg (with whom she is frequently confused). During a serious illness she confided her visions to two companions (one of whom was certainly St. Gertrud) who, for the next eight years recorded them without her knowledge. On learning of their activity, she was greatly distressed but Christ reassured her that it was His will that her experiences should be made known. See Liber Specialis Gratia, edited by the Monks of Solesmes (Pictavii: H. Oudin, 1877) and The Booke of Gostlye Grace of Mechtild of Hackeborn, edited by Theresa A. Halligan, Studies and Texts 46 (Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, 1979). Plans are afoot for a translation of the Latin text by Valerie M. Lagorio and Margot H. King which will be co-published by Cistercian Publications and Peregrina Publishing Co.

4See my forthcoming article, “Music and Hermeticism for Medieval Holy Women” in Maps of Flesh and Light, edited by Ulrike Wiethaus (Kreutzverlag). A much more comprehensive exploration of this theme will soon be published in English in the United States. Other articles on the use of plucked stringed instruments are available in reprint from Ars Antiqua, 1705 South Pearl Street, Denver CO 80210.

5See Joan Rimmer, The Irish Harp (Cork: Mercier Press for the Cultural Relations Committee, 1977).

6Classic texts of the Mythological, Ulster and Ossianic cycles are available in many translations. Readers are especially referred to the pioneering work of Ann Heymann on the Irish wire-strung harp called clairseach. She and her husband Charles have studied primary texts, completed new translations and have integrated ancient fingering-systems and cosmological meanings into their teaching and performance methods. See the forthcoming Secrets of the Gaelic Harp. Their recordings and publications are available through Clairseach Publications, 5012 Schaefer Road, Minneapolis, MN 55436. See also Edward Bunting, The Ancient Music of Ireland (rpt. Cork: Cork University Press, 1983); Robert Bruce Armstrong, The Irish and Highland Harps (Shannon: Irish University Press, 1969); Christopher Page, Voices and Instruments of the Middle Ages (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986).

7Literally translated as “soothing,” “affecting” and “exhilarating.” See Bunting, pp. 18-36.

8Bunting, p. 42. See also Aloys Fleischmann, “References to Chant in Early Irish MSS” in Essays and Studies Presented to Professor TadghUa Donnchadha (Cork: Cork University Press, 1947): pp. 43-49.

9See footnote 3.

10See Caroline Walker Bynum, Jesus as Mother: Studies in the Spirituality of the High Middle Ages (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1982): p. 176.

11Halligan, p. 35.

12For a thoughtful discussion of this office, see Alejandro Enrique Planchart, The Repertory of Tropes at Winchester (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1977): pp. 14-16.

13Two 15th century MSS are extant: Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Bodley 220B and London, British Library MS Egerton 2006E.

14Booke, Part 3, Vision 8 (Halligan, pp. 430-431).

15Booke, Prologue p. 34, and Part 2, Vision 29 (Halligan, pp. 382-383).

16Booke, Part 3, Vision 1 (Halligan, p. 412).

17The name given to the prayer said by the celebrant after the offering of the bread and wine.

18See “Concerning the Our Father” in Simone Weil Reader, edited by George Panichas (New York: McKay, 1977).

19 The Latin reads de corde Dei.

20Booke, Part 2, Vision 2 (Halligan, pp. 328-334).

21See James McKinnon, Music in Early Christian Literature, Cambridge Readings in the Literature of Music (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1987).

22Booke, Part 2, Vision 35 (Halligan, p. 393).

23Booke, Part 2, Vision 35 (Halligan, p. 392). See Pseudo-Dionysius,The Mystical Theology and the Celestial Hierarchies (North Godalming, Surrey: Shrine of Wisdom, 1949) and Adam Bittleston, Our Spiritual Companions: From Angels and Archangels to Cherubim and Seraphim (Edinburgh, 1980).

24Booke, Part 1, Vision 61 (Halligan, pp. 251-255).

25Booke, Part 1, Vision 61 (Halligan, p. 252).

26This is a line from an unpublished art song which I composed which relates the stages of development in the alchemical harp tradition as it concerns mediaeval holy women and their body-wisdom. Essentially a hymn of praise for both Hildegard of Bingen and Mechtild of Hackeborn, it is not yet recorded, although I frequently perform it in concert.